I was born in Shrewsbury, grew up in Wellington, but spent my teens in York at the Quaker school, Bootham. I studied modern history at The Queen's College, Oxford, then trained as a print journalist at (what was then called) the Yorkshire Evening Press before going on to work as a feature writer and magazine editor on a range of national titles in the UK and Madrid.
However, I've worked in online journalism from the earliest days of its emergence in the UK, initially on the first incarnation of The Sunday Times website in 1997 and as part of The Independent newspaper's online team since 2007. I'm also the founding editor/publisher of two internationally popular blogs, Shedworking (about garden offices) and Bookshelf (creative bookcase designs) and most recently sites about tiny houses and pubworking whose day is yet to come.
For much of my working life I have worked as an "independent contractor", editing, writing and designing for national magazines, newspapers and charities including Crohn's and Colitis UK, Age Concern, The Primary Club, the Mentoring and Befriending Foundation, and the National Independent Schools' Drama Association. If you'd like a full CV, please do get in touch.
Over the last decade I have increasingly concentrated on writing books and am a regular contributor to the Fine Books & Collections magazine and website.
I am also, arguably, a half-decent snooker player and play every Wednesday at Raging Ball, St Albans' premier snooker hall. I write about snooker (and sheds/microarchitecture) in a regular column for The Idler magazine.
I am married with three children and now live in St Albans in Hertfordshire.